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The Naked Chefs - The New York Times

Good morning. I was tasting the tomato sauce I was preparing for an upscale take on my freestyle roasted chicken Parm (above), when a dollop of it slid off the spoon and dropped with an audible plap onto the right vamp of a brand-new pair of Nike Air Force 1s. The stain hurt me emotionally, but there was no harm done to my skin, as when spattering fat from a falafel incident blistered my wrist and ruined my shirt-front. This was my life for years: accidents and stains and burns mild and serious. I wear old Crocs to cook in now (yes, they’re camo), and lately a nice apron I got at The New York Times Food Festival last fall.

All of which is to underscore how amazing this new article from Priya Krishna is in The Times, about the joy some in the world take from cooking naked. Give that story a read right now, and we’ll talk about cooking — clothed or not — when you’re done. [PAUSE] Wow, right? (I didn’t know nudists called the rest of us “textiles.”) Forget Jamie Oliver. These cats in Florida are the real naked chefs.

Here’s a good thing to make for dinner tonight: pasta with brown butter and Parmesan. Here’s another: skillet hot honey chicken with hearty greens. Here’s a third: vegetarian Swedish meatballs, to serve on generously buttered egg noodles.

Maybe you’re not looking for strict instruction, though, here in the middle of the week. Maybe you’d prefer a kind of narrative prompt instead, a stimulus toward improvisation, something like this no-recipe recipe for hot and sticky chicken wings, which I’d serve with green beans roasted with sesame oil and a bowl of rice.

It’s simple. Heat your oven to 450, and line a sheet pan with foil. If you have a rack to put on top of it, so much the better. While the oven heats, combine a few tablespoons of gochujang, the Korean hot pepper paste, with a somewhat smaller amount of sweet miso, soy sauce, rice wine and a splash of sesame oil, and then coat a bunch of chicken wings with it, in a big bowl. (Don’t have those ingredients? Improvise! I’ve swapped in Sriracha for the gochujang, mayonnaise for the miso, oyster sauce and fermented black beans just because. Here’s more on how to do that, from an article I wrote about the chef Dale Talde.) Put the wings on the sheet pan and roast them in the oven until they’re crisp and sticky and cooked all the way through, about 30 minutes.

Later you could make a chocolate dump-it cake. Or you could ignore all these ideas and make like a good New Englander, prepare roasted cod and potatoes, sing “Bobby Orr,” by the legendary worst band in Boston, Mente.

Thousands and thousands and thousands more recipes to cook this week waiting for you on NYT Cooking. (Why, here are 18 easy weeknight salmon recipes now. And 23 chicken breast recipes for busy nights right behind her!) Yes, you need a subscription to access them. But I think you’ll find it worth the scratch.

Please visit us on Facebook, if you use that platform to connect with family and friends. You can join the NYT Cooking community group there when you do. Make our Instagram and Twitter pages regular stops on your trap line as well. And of course we’re on YouTube. Like and subscribe, if you please.

And if something goes wrong along the way, either with your cooking or our technology, please write: cookingcare@nytimes.com. Someone will get back to you.

Now, it has nothing to do with Arctic char or buttered radishes, but I took a fond swipe at the baby boomers in my Sunday newsletter and some took it hard, writing me in anguish that I implied they didn’t have YouTube channels. Boomers raised me from a pup. I treasure their legacy. I apologize! Here’s Gang of Four, “To Hell With Poverty,” live in 1981. (Andy Gill, the band’s guitarist, died on Saturday at 64.)

David Sedaris on Amy Sedaris, in Elle? Yes, please.

Earthquakes near the proposed Pebble Mine site in Alaska’s Bristol Bay? What could go wrong?

Finally, here’s Daniel Markovits in The Atlantic, on how McKinsey & Company destroyed the American middle class. Consider all that and I’ll be back on Friday.

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